New York Times Magazine contributing writer Stephen Rodrick found out when he spent time with the actress on the set of The Canyons – an explicit Kickstarter-funded "microbudget" film penned by American Psycho author Bret Easton Ellis.
In the nearly 8,000 word piece, Rodrick unveils a unique version of Lohan, 26, in which she goes on extended crying jags yet shows actual talent on set. Still, he depicts her behaving very unreliably (at one point actually fleeing from crew members to go out to lunch with her friends) and acting jealous of adult film star James Deen, her costar.
After arriving late to the first read-through of the film's script, Lohan lends her thoughts on her character, Tara, a failed actress who is financially dependent on her boyfriend, Christian (Deen).
"Rejection for an actress is formative," director Paul Schrader tells her.
"Well, it's nothing like going to jail, I can tell you that," Lohan replies.
While another incident Rodrick is witness to serves as a painful reminder of Lohan's dysfunctional family life.
After rehearsing a scene where costar Deen has to throw her to the ground, Lohan "bounced up with a smile," the author describes. "That was great! Want to do it again?" she asks Schrader in the article. When the scene ends, someone compliments Lohan's work. She answers: "Well, I've got a lot of experience with that from my dad."
"She didn't elaborate, and no one asked," Rodrick writes.